Cincinnati and Washington D.C. will be the first cities to see why the sizzling Broadway revival of Chicago has been the talk of the Big Apple.
The first national tour of the smash musical will kick off at Cincinnati's Aronoff Center March 25, running until April 6. The revival will then head to Washington's National Theater, where it will settle in for a hefty 13 week run from April 8 to July 6. Then it's on to the Palace Theatre in Columbus, July 8-20, where it replaces the previously announced, closed on-the-road Funny Girl. The Chicago tour cast has not yet been announced.
The National appears to be undergoing a revival of its own: after spending many months dark, the theater is currently host to the Broadway-bound Whistle Down the Wind, to be followed by the now-and-forever Cats tour, and then Chicago. Tickets for the Cincinnati stand will go on sale in early February; an announcement about Washington tickets will be made in coming weeks.
A second Chicago tour will launch in May, with early indications that it will visit West Coast cities.
Casting is still in progress; there is yet no word on who will headline the tours as the murderous Velma Kelly and Roxie Hart. The production's minimalist set design makes the tours relatively fast to assemble, allowing producers Fran and Barry Weissler to reap maximum benefit from the afterglow of the show's New York reception and the widely-anticipated slew of nominations and awards the show will collect in the spring.
The $3 million Broadway revival has been a hot ticket since opening in the autumn, and has been selling out steadily since late November. The production at the Richard Rodgers Theatre runs through Feb. 9, then moves to the Shubert Theatre Feb. 12 to make way for the new Kander and Ebb show, Steel Pier.
This production of Chicago, directed by Walter Bobbie and choreographed by Reinking ("in the style of Bob Fosse") originated as a four-performance concert staging in May at City Center's Encores! series devoted to classic musical scores.